Volunteer firefighters take initiative for tractor rollover preparedness

CE-MR-3-SOUTH-MINDEN-colorby Michael Wren

SOUTH MINDEN, NY — Living in a rural farming community definitely has its advantages. Fresh air, friendly people, and room to stretch your legs to name a few perks. However, with farming and working with heavy machinery, there is always the possibility of something going wrong. And when it goes wrong, it can go very wrong. This forethought is exactly why the South Minden Volunteer Fire Department decided to take a preventative strike against farm accidents, mainly tractor rollovers. They enrolled in a Farmedic class taught by Erik Merrell, an instructor working with McNeil & Co., a specialized risk management insurance company from Cortland, to learn how to properly handle a real life catastrophe. [Read more…]

Digestive disorders: their impact on whole horse management

CW-MR-1-Disgestive-disorders5040by Katie Navarra

Digestive disorders in horses can be difficult to detect as they are often mistaken for other, seemingly unrelated issues. Therefore, a whole horse management approach is critical to maintaining your horse’s digestive health.

Surprisingly, a horse that exhibits hoof problems may really be suffering from a digestive order that is showing up in a hoof or lameness issue. [Read more…]

Improving and renovating hay fields

CEW-MR-1-Renovating-hay5by Katie Navarra

Renovating a hay field can be a cost-effective alternative to improving the quality and the quantity of hay harvested. “Sometimes you don’t have the time or the resources to go through the process of tilling the land and reseeding it,” said Aaron Gabriel, senior extension resource educator of agronomy for Cornell Cooperative Extension.

And if you do have the resources to till and reseed, Mother Nature may work against you. Hay seedlings planted last spring had a hard time thriving because of the dry spring conditions. Some farmers experienced disappointing results. [Read more…]

Unconventional dairy farming

CEW-MR-2-Unconventional-dairy2by Tamara Scully

It isn’t unusual for dairy farmers to call it quits. With a move toward larger dairies, small farmers often feel the pinch, and opting out is sometimes the sensible option.

That’s what happened to Karen and Mike Hooper, who retired from their dairy farm outside of Syracuse, NY, and headed to Florida. Dairying had become stressful, and the herd — as well as the farmers — wasn’t able to function optimally. Cows were pushed to make more milk, and suffered with hock and hoof issues, mastitis, and other concerns. [Read more…]

Graziers find solutions are under foot

CE-MR-4-Graziers-find-solutions2by Troy Bishopp

CANASTOTA, NY — Whether it was the premise of meeting a supernatural Vermont “Agronomator”, witnessing a rain machine test the water holding capacity of pasture soil or enjoying a first class meal of grass-fed beef and homemade churned ice-cream, over 125 farmers from all agricultural genres filled their knowledge base to capacity on an early May day. [Read more…]